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Pete J.

Am I the only one seeing a price decrease in the secondary market for kits?

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I have been thinking of thinning out my stash for a while lately, but I am convinced this is not the time for that.  It kind of looks to me like the market is in the tank for individuals selling kits off.  I have been following eBay for a while, looking at the completed auctions and stuff is either going for cheap or not at all.  Don't get me wrong.  It looks like the truly rare kits will still bring good money, but it looks like premium kits just are selling.  I have seen several "no reserve" auctions go down with no bids at all.  

I've also seen that the asking prices on the "buy it now" kits are probably 10 times what similar items that sold are going for.  A lot of them just keep rolling over.  I guess they are hoping to hook that one big sucker.  

This is all counter intuitive to me.  I would have thought that with the pandemic, this end of the market would be doing well, not going down the drain.  I don't understand.

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I saw prices on old/rare stuff go up in the spring and early summer. My theory was there were a LOT of folks sitting home getting that bonus $600 unemployment check every week and looking for a cool way to spend some of it. I know for a fact that such people existed because I was one of them. B)

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The going price for most of the main stream kits may be depressed by the Hobby Lobby resent dumping of kits at 40 % or more off their inflated MSRP. Many may be waiting for the reissues with better decals and tires. Some may have to hold off buying anything with the uncertainties in the world today also. 

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I don’t think the secondary market tanked recently for very common kits, I think it’s always been that way. It probably has to do with my access to a lot of local shows and club meetings but I’m very used to buying these for $5 to $10 each.

Maybe ten years ago I sorted my stash and found I had loads of some of my favorites, AMT 50, 55, 57 Chevy pickups,  Revell 50 Ford pickups etc. I culled about 5 cases of duplicates I’d never miss from my collection and once I investigated pricing, it just wasn’t worth my time and effort to sell them.

So some of the open kits got dumped into my parts bins for that specific kit because the parts were worth more to me. It gave me freedom to hack on a body or chassis without worry, and I sent a lot of parts to folks over the years. 

Other things that have come into play on eBay is first that postage has increased dramatically. When I first got involved, Priority Mail was $3 for a 2lb box and now it costs $10 to ship a kit. Where the price of a cheap kit hasn’t changed, it has doubled due to shipping.

There is a lot more competition on eBay so plug in a common kit and dozens of that same kit will pop up, so of course you’re going for the cheapest. 

Ebay allows every account 200 free listings a month so it cost nothing to try. Only fees on sold items. That goes both ways.. it saturates the market with cheap kits and very expensive ones too. It costs nothing to list cheap kits for $100 each, so  sellers can go trolling for suckers and occasionally get one. Model car listings do show up in searches for real car parts, so the opportunity to snag an owner of a 1:1 who knows nothing about kit prices.

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I know that the kits I'm selling off now on the 'bay are going for next to nothing. I picked a lousy time to sell kits.

A TD Vanbulance went for $76.00, but everything else is going for One or Two bids. No matter, money is secondary to getting rid of them, but it sucks to be giving so many away (figuratively speaking). I'm just happy they are selling at all. I have a bunch of stuff ending this Sunday. It will nice to see if I have any big Sellers.

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A lot has changed in the last 10 years. Nowadays you get kits from an actual hobby shop or a place like Ollies or Hobby Lobby or the internet. I remember when a lot of the big retailers like Walmart and Target and Meijer's  and Kmarts had big model kit sections in their stores with paint and glue etc. Those days are long gone. I live in a suburb of Detroit and there is one super hobby shop on my side of town called Great Lakes Hobby and he carries every kind of hobby imaginable. I remember growing up as a kid in Detroit in the 1950's and early 60's we had a hobby shop called Lawrence's and AMT kits went for a whole dollar. But as we all know nothing stays the same.

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I should have been more specific I guess.  Most of my kits are Tamiya or Gunze-Sangyos.  I have seen a lot of Tamiyas 1:20 F1 and WRC cars going through with no bids or just one bid and at less than $15.  Perhaps the problem is in the better kits.  Not sure. 

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53 minutes ago, Pete J. said:

I should have been more specific I guess.  Most of my kits are Tamiya or Gunze-Sangyos.  I have seen a lot of Tamiyas 1:20 F1 and WRC cars going through with no bids or just one bid and at less than $15.  Perhaps the problem is in the better kits.  Not sure. 

So  kits like Tamiya VW Beetle or Karmann Ghia, or Ferrari F40, F50, or Enzo Ferrari go for next to nothing? How about Mercedes 300 SL?

Then there are Tamiya kits that are going for much more than the original price.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/1-6-Scale-Tamiya-HARLEY-DAVIDSON-FLSTF-FAT-BOY-16029-9800-Ultra-rare-/264847951372

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Just this past week I sold a Monogram S-10 pickup kit for $85 plus shipping, and a REVELL Syclone kit for $41 plus shipping. Those two surprised me. The only other one I sold was an AMT Sonoma pickup kit, that went for $7.50 plus shipping.  The recent news about that one being re-issued may have been a factor in that selling price. I had an AMT 1995 Blazer kit listed that didn't get any bids.

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As a sort of guide, here are prices I recently got for various kits on eBay.  All of these were "Buy It Now."  For those who don't do eBay, that means they were NOT auctions.  I set a fixed price and the buyers paid it. The prices are for the kits only, shipping not included.

This was the first time I ever had a "Buy It Now" sale.  I've been selling on eBay since the 1990's and always used the auction format.  To set the prices, I did a lot of research on "Completed Items" to see what kits sold for.  Then priced my stuff in that ballpark.

NOTE: THIS IS NOT A PRICE LIST TO SELL STUFF.  ALL THESE KITS ARE ALREADY SOLD AND SENT TO NEW OWNERS. PRICES PROVIDED ONLY AS A GUIDE TO CURRENT eBay KIT PRICES. IN MOST CASES I ONLY HAD ONE KIT TO SELL. SO PLEASE DO NOT PM ME TRYING TO BUY THEM, THANKS!

AMT '55 Chevy Nomad, Johnny Lightning version with 1/64 scale diecast Nomad  $19.99

AMT '59 El Camino, 1989 issue $19.99

AMT '64 Ford Galaxie, Blueprinter issue $29.99

AMT '64 Mercury Marauder, last reissue before Round 2 $19.99

AMT Lot, '96 and '97 Ford Explorers $29.99

AMT Dodge Dually Pickup, Snap-Fast $39.99

Aoshima Range Rover with American SATCO resin left-hand drive dashboard $59.99

Heller Mercedes 300SL Gullwing (crack in cowling) $14.99

Italeri '57 Mercedes 300SL Roadster $27.99

Lindberg Dodge L-700, truck only no trailer $17.99

MENG Ford F-350 pickup, 1/24 scale $109.99 

Monogram Corvette America 4-door (bad box) $34.99

Revell Lot, 2 Chevy Caprices, 1 original and 1 "Taxi" kit $34.99

Revell Lot, '67 Corvettes, coupe & roadster $39.99

Revell '48 Ford Woody, first issue $14.99

Revell '59 Ford Retractable "Skip's" (no stock hubcaps) $16.99

Revell Ford F-150 Double Kit "50th Anniversary"  $24.99

Revell Lincoln Futura, 2006 "small box" reissue $24.99  

Trumpeter '63 Nova hardtop $99.99

Yodel '78 Dodge Monaco CHP (bad box, no Plymouth Fury parts) $19.99

 

Edited by Mike999
goof

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That price on the Trumpeter Nova is interesting.  Must be some story behind that.

You would think it was a Mustang or something. 😁

Edited by vamach1

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24 minutes ago, vamach1 said:

That price on the Trumpeter Nova is interesting.  Must be some story behind that.

A couple of those Nova kits went for $150 "Buy It Now."  Others got bid up to nearly that much.  It was also interesting to me that in my sale, the Nova and the MENG Ford F-350 were 2 of the most expensive kits, but also 2 of the first kits that sold.  Within a couple hours of the sale going up, IIRC.

If the system will co-operate, here's an eBay "Completed Items" search on the Trumpeter Nova showing what they sold for.

https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_sop=1&_sadis=15&_stpos=29672-9125&_from=R40&_nkw=trumpeter+63+nova+&_sacat=1188&rt=nc&LH_Complete=1

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1 hour ago, Mike999 said:

A couple of those Nova kits went for $150 "Buy It Now."  Others got bid up to nearly that much.  It was also interesting to me that in my sale, the Nova and the MENG Ford F-350 were 2 of the most expensive kits, but also 2 of the first kits that sold.  Within a couple hours of the sale going up, IIRC.

If the system will co-operate, here's an eBay "Completed Items" search on the Trumpeter Nova showing what they sold for.

https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_sop=1&_sadis=15&_stpos=29672-9125&_from=R40&_nkw=trumpeter+63+nova+&_sacat=1188&rt=nc&LH_Complete=1

I think I saw that offering and gasped. And came here and posted wondering why Trumpeter doesn't reissue this kit. :o

I got a copy of the convertible kit very reasonable a few years ago, but I have little or no interest in droptops, so I bought an MCW 2DS body for it last year, which I need to get around to building. 

Meanwhile, just a couple weeks ago I scored a nice rebuildable AMT '62 Nova survivor for under $40. 

I've been catching up on past episodes of Street Outlaws and Memphis Street Outlaws lately and am coming down with a bad case of Early Nova Fever. I NEED to build a couple of them! :D

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Sounds like I need to git an E Bay account to off some old kits I'm never going to get to. Some of these prices are startling to say the least. Far more than what I would get at the local Show & Swap Meet in the past.  

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22 hours ago, espo said:

Sounds like I need to git an E Bay account to off some old kits I'm never going to get to. Some of these prices are startling to say the least. Far more than what I would get at the local Show & Swap Meet in the past.  

Go for it!  For all its many faults, on eBay you're selling to people who might not have any kind of hobby shop or scale model swap meets nearby.  

Here's the procedure I use for listing kits, in 4 steps. 

1. Take photo(s). eBay does its own photo hosting, so I put my photos in an 'eBay" folder on the PC. I number each photo in sequence to match the number of the listing.  e.g., if the first kit I'm listing is an AMT '40 Ford, that photo is 1.jpg.  Sometimes I need more than one photo, so I number them 1a, 1b etc. That means I don't have to waste time searching thru my photo folder for "40Ford.jpg."

2.  Write Title and Description.  At a minimum in the Title, I include the manufacturer, kit number, description and scale. Example:  "Lindberg #73067 Dodge L-700 Tilt Cab Tractor 1/25."

The Description is the sales pitch.  I mention good stuff, but also any damage or missing parts, etc.  Example: "Hard-to-find AMT snap kit of the '96 Dodge Ram Dually heavy-duty pickup truck. Great for conversions or building a weathered, beat-up work truck. STILL SHRINK-WRAPPED."

I write the Titles and Descriptions in Notepad, then copy and paste into the eBay text boxes when I'm putting up the sale.  Much easier than trying to write them on the fly, when I might forget something. 

3. Get shipping box, weigh and measure kit.  THIS IS IMPORTANT. For every listing, eBay needs a package size and weight to calculate the shipping cost. 

Don't sign up for any eBay shipping or label-making programs.  It's easier and cheaper to do all that yourself.  Get a tape measure and a cheap postal scale from Office Depot to measure and weigh your boxes. You can also buy Avery labels at Office Depot. They include printing templates for word-processing programs.

The US Postal Service will deliver free shipping boxes right to your door.  Just go to the USPS website and create an account. You'll probably still need some odd-size boxes. You can get those free from stores in your area.

4. Go to eBay, click SELL and start listing!  You'll have to do the following, in sequence:

--A. Add "Listing Details." Copy and paste your Title.  eBay offers many extra-cost things here, like a Subtitle and Second Category.  I ignore them. 

--B. Add Photo(s). Navigate to the folder on your PC where the eBay photos are stored and put them in the template.  You can have up to 12 photos for each item.

--C. Under "Item Specifics," add anything Required.

--D.  Under "Item Description," copy and paste your Description text.

--E. Under "Selling Details," select a format:  "Auction-style" or "Fixed Price."  Auction style is better for old, rare kits where you hope for a feeding frenzy.  You can choose a Duration for the auction, the default is 7 days. 

Fixed Price is "Buy It Now."  If you select Fixed Price, you can let the buyer make offers.  I don't do that, because I'm lazy and don't want to negotiate endlessly with cheapskates and chiselers. Fixed Price listings don't have a duration, and will stay up until the item sells or you cancel it. 

--F.  Add PRICE! And "Payment Method."  To keep things simple, I only accept payment by PayPal.  

--G. "Shipping Details" is next, including size and weight of package.  You can add a "Handling Cost." That's included in the Shipping cost and the buyer does not see it. 

Now it gets tricky...

WARNING: BY DEFAULT, eBay assumes you want to ship to every country in the world.  If not, you have to manually "Exclude" countries.  For right now, I'm only shipping in the USA, so I exclude everywhere else.  Exclude "North America," unless you will ship to Canada and Mexico.

--H.  At the bottom of the page, click the "Preview" button and make sure the listing is right. If not, go back to the Listing page and make changes.  Click the "Save As Template" button so you don't have to re-enter all this stuff again in the future. 

Finally, click the "List Item"  button.  And you're off and selling! 

eBay will ask if you want to list a similar item.  Select "Yes" and it will take you back to the item you just finished listing.  You can edit the info for your next listing.

LAST WARNING:  sometimes a buyer wins more than one kit.  When they do that, they often pay for each kit individually.  That means eBay will charge them the full shipping cost for EVERY item.  (It also means you have to find a bigger box, re-pack, measure and weigh it.)  I put this in all my listings:  "IMPORTANT!  If you buy more than 1 item, request a total with combined shipping.  If you pay instantly for multiple items, you will be charged shipping on EACH item. If that happens, I will refund your excess shipping thru PayPal."

 

 

Edited by Mike999
goof

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7 minutes ago, Mike999 said:

Go for it!  For all its many faults, on eBay you're selling to people who might not have any kind of hobby shop or scale model swap meets nearby.  

Here's the procedure I use for listing kits, in 4 steps. 

1. Take photo(s). eBay does its own photo hosting, so I put my photos in an 'eBay" folder on the PC. I number each photo in sequence to match the number of the listing.  e.g., if the first kit I'm listing is an AMT '40 Ford, that photo is 1.jpg.  Sometimes I need more than one photo, so I number them 1a, 1b etc. That means I don't have to waste time searching thru my photo folder for "40Ford.jpg."

2.  Write Title and Description.  At a minimum in the Title, I include the manufacturer, kit number, description and scale. Example:  "Lindberg #73067 Dodge L-700 Tilt Cab Tractor 1/25."

The Description is the sales pitch.  I mention good stuff, but also any damage or missing parts, etc.  Example: "Hard-to-find AMT snap kit of the '96 Dodge Ram Dually heavy-duty pickup truck. Great for conversions or building a weathered, beat-up work truck. STILL SHRINK-WRAPPED."

I write the Titles and Descriptions in Notepad, then copy and paste into the eBay text boxes when I'm putting up the sale.  Much easier than trying to write them on the fly, when I might forget something. 

3. Get shipping box, weigh and measure kit.  THIS IS IMPORTANT. For every listing, eBay needs a package size and weight to calculate the shipping cost. 

Don't sign up for any eBay shipping or label-making programs.  It's easier and cheaper to do all that yourself.  Get a tape measure and a cheap postal scale from Office Depot to measure and weigh your boxes. You can also buy Avery labels at Office Depot. They include printing templates for word-processing programs.

The US Postal Service will deliver free shipping boxes right to your door.  Just go to the USPS website and create an account. You'll probably still need some odd-size boxes. You can get those free from stores in your area.

4. Go to eBay, click SELL and start listing!  You'll have to do the following, in sequence:

--A. Add "Listing Details." Copy and paste your Title.  eBay offers many extra-cost things here, like a Subtitle and Second Category.  I ignore them. 

--B. Add Photo(s). Navigate to the folder on your PC where the eBay photos are stored and put them in the template.  You can have up to 12 photos for each item.

--C. Under "Item Specifics," add anything Required.

--D.  Under "Item Description," copy and paste your Description text.

--E. Under "Selling Details," select a format:  "Auction-style" or "Fixed Price."  Auction style is better for old, rare kits where you hope for a feeding frenzy.  You can choose a Duration for the auction, the default is 7 days. 

Fixed Price is "Buy It Now."  If you select Fixed Price, you can let the buyer make offers.  I don't do that, because I'm lazy and don't want to negotiate endlessly with cheapskates and chiselers. Fixed Price listings don't have a duration, and will stay up until the item sells or you cancel it. 

--F.  Add PRICE! And "Payment Method."  To keep things simple, I only accept payment by PayPal.  

--G. "Shipping Details" is next, including size and weight of package.  You can add a "Handling Cost." That's included in the Shipping cost and the buyer does not see it. 

Now it gets tricky...

WARNING: BY DEFAULT, eBay assumes you want to ship to every country in the world.  If not, you have to manually "Exclude" countries.  For right now, I'm only shipping in the USA, so I exclude everywhere else.  Exclude "North America," unless you will ship to Canada and Mexico.

H.  At the bottom of the page, click the "Preview" button and make sure the listing is right. If not, go back to the Listing page and make changes.  Click the "Save As Template" button so you don't have to re-enter all this stuff again in the future. 

Finally, click the "List Item"  button.  And you're off and selling! 

eBay will ask if you want to list a similar item.  Select "Yes" and it will take you back to the item you just finished listing.  You can edit the info for your next listing.

LAST WARNING:  sometimes a buyer wins more than one kit.  When they do that, they often pay for each kit individually.  That means eBay will charge them the full shipping cost for EVERY item.  (It also means you have to find a bigger box, re-pack, measure and weigh it.)  I put this in all my listings:  "IMPORTANT!  If you buy more than 1 item, request a total with combined shipping.  If you pay instantly for multiple items, you will be charged shipping on EACH item. If that happens, I will refund your excess shipping thru PayPal."

 

Thank you for the information, and more importantly the additional details on how to navigate the listing in and outs.  

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I think the market is flooded right now due to several factors. 

As an ebay seller, the fees have increased and of course shipping rates have too. To me it's not worth the hassle anymore with making boxes, going to the post office, uploading tracking numbers- things you don't get paid for. 

I just cleared out a bunch of duplicate/kits I'd never build on ebay and thought the sale prices were a bit down. No matter, now I have more room to buy more kits!

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This is the type of thing I am referring to.  https://www.ebay.com/b/Tamiya-1-24-Automotive-Models-Kits/2580/bn_7112108532?LH_Auction=1&rt=nc&_sop=1  So many with no bids or one bid only.  Now I recognize that the minimum starting bid on some are way out of line, but many aren't and they seem to be getting very little attention.   Now the other side is what what sold.  https://www.ebay.com/b/Tamiya-1-24-Automotive-Models-Kits/2580/bn_7112108532?rt=nc&LH_Auction=1&_sop=1&LH_PrefLoc=1&LH_Complete=1  Again, a lot sold with a single bid or they were a low minimum starting bid.  There are a few that get attention but they seem to be the exception.  

I guess it would just make sense to sit on my kits and keep an eye on the market.  I am really thinning the herd to help my family out(I am 70) so they don't have to deal with a mass of models that they don't understand.  I guess I need to pick out what I am likely to build and set the rest up for a sale later. I really have to believe that I only need thirty or forty kits to get to the end of my modeling career.

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And only list items with starting bid at the lowest price you’d be happy to accept!  There are people saying to start stuff at a penny or at 99 cents and it will cause competition!  I’ve been burned there!  There are people that just put in minimum bids on these, and once they win for a penny, they’ll argue postage charges etc. Not nice people to deal with! 

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I am still a gradual buyer of kits. My best bargains were the raffles at models shows. I would buy $40 worth of tickets and go home with over $100 worth of kits. Some weren't in my wheelhouse but my interest in them may change. I jumped back into the hobby around 2004 (I think). Ebay got me most of what I have. Shipping was reasonable and many kits I got were $10-15 including shipping. I now have 98% of what I want with not very many duplicates. While I am still a shopper, I can pick and choose for the best deal. I use pickclick.com (not a link) and sort by price. It shows the best deal and is pretty good at finding oddball items much faster. I have sold a few items on Scalemates by keeping the prices reasonably low and letting the buyer pick their shipping method and cost. It usually takes about a week of correspondence to hammer everything out but it has worked out well for both parties. Also the "listing" is basically forever and there are no fees. You simply put the kit in your trading tab and it shows up that you are offering it whenever someone is simply researching that kit. I have sold maybe 4-5 kits in 2 years.

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I also believe the market is flooded right now, how many of us are aging and sitting on a couple to a few hundred kits right now, I know many guys that are thinning the stash, cutting back on buying, realizing their never going to get to em all, I know I've sold a couple hundred the past couple years and will clear out a bunch more this winter, sure there will be some kits that always bring good money but I think lots and lots of common and semi-common kits will drop in price, just not enough younger guys interested to replace us older guys

 

also when setting your prices on ebay remember they and paypal get a cut that's usually adds up to about 20% or so

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If anyone is thinning out their herd let me know lol ! I buy common kits on other sites for 10 each with shipping. So if anyone is at that price point let me know. Any kits will do. Building the stash 

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